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 John claims there are only 36 times tables that need to be remembered. Explain.

Y9 bottom set, my first year of teaching: to prove that I could get them all to recall all table facts up to 9 x 9. I introduced table flash cards so that for 3 x 4 = 12 the paired card would have 12 in a middle circle and 3 in top right hand corner and 4 in bottom left.
The four facts associated with the card were discussed and a few cards were introduced at the beginning of each lesson. After a few weeks the group were tested. A question on each card at random, ie: 12 ÷ 4, 4 x 3, 12 ÷ 3 or 3 x 4. The test was scored for each pupil and recorded on a personal table. Every lesson started with a test prepared on paper and pupils were given the time taken. Results were recorded and individual graphs drawn up are displayed.
We stopped when everyone had 100% success rate. Tested twice at each successive term showed no long lasting effects. Kids good at the start remained good and so on.
As a footnote I did not have instant recall of my tables until I started teaching and even then I was not reliable, but I was always able to work them out!
P. S.
You rightly asked if I would do it again. Yes, as a bit of fun. I used the flash cards with our daughter! And she chose to teach maths rather than be a chemical engineer.
 What I like is that 6, 7 and 42 become linked and that 6 x 7 and 7 x 6 is not learnt twice. It cuts the times tables in half.
 What I like with your technique is that kids work in pairs, they create their own slides and in fact work as mathematicians.
